Happy (isolation) Friday. But although the weekend is near, markets never rest — as evidenced by another round of COVID-19 volatility on the ASX this morning.

With the health crisis still in its escalation phase, total positive cases globally topped 1 million overnight while the death tally in New York rose past 1,500.

As the numbers climb, health authorities are reviewing their stance on the use of face masks, which initially were only deemed useful for people who already had the virus and didn’t want to spread it.

This week, the respective mayors of Los Angeles and New York advocated the use of masks or face coverings for all citizens when carrying out tasks outside.

Tutorials for making home-made face masks are now springing up, with medical-grade masks still in short supply.

As more people start resembling Bane for their trip to the shops, we wonder if the phrase “face mask” will join “hand sanitiser” as key words in ASX company announcements that can still send share prices ripping higher.

On the markets front, local stocks began the day almost 2 per cent higher after gains in the US overnight. But the ASX200 gave up those gains shortly after to be treading water into midday trade.

 

WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Friday April 3:

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CODE COMPANY PRICE % CHANGE MARKET CAP
OEX Oilex 0.002 100.00% $6.9M
SKN Skin Elements 0.038 100.00% $12.7M
WCN White Cliff Minerals 0.004 60.00% $1.9M
CXO Core Exploration Ltd 0.034 54.55% $25.4M
ATS Australis Oil & Gas 0.032 52.38% $31.6M
CCE Carnegie Clean 0.0015 50.00% $11.1M
BOC Bougainville Copper 0.255 50.00% $102.3M
EGR Ecograf 0.042 40.00% $12.9M
AUZ Australian Mines Ltd 0.011 37.50% $37.9M
SE1 Sensera 0.004 33.33% $967K
TMX Terrain Minerals Ltd 0.004 33.33% $2.2M
M8S M8 Sustainable 0.056 33.33% $9.8M
LPD Lepidico 0.012 33.33% $41.7M
EUC European Cobalt 0.014 27.27% $8.4M
MTC Metalstech 0.066 26.92% $5.0M
DCC Digitalx 0.019 26.67% $9.1M
AX8 Accelerate Resources 0.019 26.67% $893K
MOZ Noni B Ltd 0.57 26.67% $43.6M
BRL Bathurst Resources 0.079 25.40% $107.7M
RHY Rhythm Biosciences 0.12 25.00% $9.7M

Core Lithium (ASX:CXO)

Shares in Core jumped more than 40 per cent in morning trade, after the company secured key approvals from the Northern Territory government for its advanced Finniss lithium project.

The company plans to have offtake agreements and construction plans in place by the end of 2020. Managing director Stephen Biggins said the project’s mine-life was expected to “double or even triple” once updated feasibility studies were completed by mid-year.

 

LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Friday April 3:

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CODE COMPANY PRICE % CHANGE MARKET CAP
PCL Pancontinental Oil&Gas 0.001 -33.33% $5.4M
PMY Pacifico Minerals Ltd 0.003 -25.00% $11.6M
IMS Impelus 0.003 -25.00% $2.4M
RBR RBR Group 0.006 -25.00% $6.3M
AUL Austar Gold Ltd 0.185 -24.49% $6.1M
WJA Wameja 0.07 -22.22% $109.0M
THR Thor Mining DRC 0.004 -20.00% $5.4M
NC6 Nanollose 0.031 -16.22% $2.8M
MRQ MRG Metals Ltd 0.006 -14.29% $7.4M
ENT Enterprise Metals Ltd 0.006 -14.29% $3.3M
RIM Rimfire Pacific Mining NL 0.003 -14.29% $4.5M
SUP Superior Lake 0.06 -14.29% $7.6M
MAY Melbana Energy 0.003 -14.29% $7.0M
S2R S2 Resources Ltd 0.069 -13.75% $19.8M
ATL Apollo Tourism & Leisure 0.13 -13.33% $27.9M
ADR Adherium Ltd 0.02 -13.04% $11.4M
OKR Okapi Resources 0.041 -12.77% $1.7M
AON Apollo Minerals Ltd 0.014 -12.50% $5.4M
AFL AF Legal 0.12 -11.11% $8.1M